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Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 1987 Dec;84(24):9252-6.

Loss of heterozygosity on chromosomes 3, 13, and 17 in small-cell carcinoma and on chromosome 3 in adenocarcinoma of the lung.

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National Cancer Center Research Institute, Tokyo, Japan.


By a molecular genetic approach using polymorphic DNA markers that detect allelic deletion of specific chromosomal regions, we analyzed for possible loss of chromosomal heterozygosity in five different histological types of lung cancers obtained from 47 patients. In small-cell carcinomas, the incidence of allelic deletions at three different chromosomal loci was extremely high; loss of heterozygosity was detected on chromosomes 3p in 7 of 7 patients (100%), 13q in 10 of 11 patients (91%), and 17p in 5 of 5 patients (100%). The deletions at these loci in small-cell carcinomas were observed even in the tumors without any clinical evidence of metastasis. Furthermore, loss of heterozygosity on chromosomes 3p and 13q occurred prior to NMYC amplification and chromosome 11p deletion. Loss of heterozygosity on chromosome 3p was also detected with high frequency in adenocarcinomas [5 of 6 patients (83%)]. Heterozygosity of chromosomes 13q and 17p was lost in 10 of 31 patients (32%) and in 3 of 12 patients (25%), respectively, of lung cancers other than small-cell carcinomas. These results indicate that recessive genetic changes involving sequences on chromosomes 3p, 13q, and 17p may play important roles in the genesis of small-cell carcinoma, and those on chromosome 3p may play an important role in the genesis of adenocarcinoma.

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